1. D-Caf's Avatar
    Well I recently had a chance to try out a new case for my SGSII and it's time to share. There is a nice video review here, but here is my take on it in old school text. Three small disclaimers first:

    1. I was provided this case for free with the understanding that I would provide feedback and a review of what I thought of it by Rearth. No other compensation was provided and no conditions were attached beyond providing my honest review.

    2. I am not a case fan. The thickest case I've used since my Palm Treo days was a Zagg full body shield on my Samsung Captivate. I know it's risky for high priced toys, but I like a comfy fit in my jeans pocket and cases always seem to add bulk and inconveniences. I forewarned Rearth about this disposition, they still agreed to send the case.

    3. Sorry for the pic quality, had to use my old captivate in pour lighting.

    So with the disclaimers out of the way, on with the review.

    I received the case in the mail Thursday last week and decided I would give it a couple of work days as well as a weekends worth of use before writing my review. Packaging was simple and easy to open, no scissors required, an added bonus was my kids loved using the cardboard dummy phone as their own “phone like dads” to play with. Installation was simple, just wrap it around the phone and go. Besides using the case I didn't change my normal phone usage pattern, it still stays in my pocket, or sits on my desk, or on the night stand.

    The good:

    I'm impressed, I figured adding any bulk to the svelte SGSII would be annoying, but it still very comfortable in my front jean pocket. The case is slightly rubberized but remains smooth so it slides easily in and out of the pocket. Still, it also adds a little grip to provide sure handling. I even tested the grip quality when I fumbled the phone and nearly dropped it on concrete. After a little juggling during the recovery, the case provided the proper stick to allow me to grip it back under control. Of course this means I wasn't able to test how well the case protected the phone in a fall to the floor, but hopefully you'll excuse my failure to fully test that. I believe the case would help most casual falls, it provides a small degree of padding, and certainly will protect against most scuff/scrape marks. Also, it appears to be compatible with most any screen protector you might put on. All mic, speaker, sensor, usb, etc holes/ports have precise clean cut outs that appear to have been well thought out. No problem plugging in USB cables, headphones, or using speaker phone mode.

    I like the additional protection around the camera lens provided by the fact the case is slightly taller than the protruding camera/flash housing. On it's back the phone no longer rests on the camera.

    In attention to detail there are raised areas of rubber that are placed in the same locations as the power and volume keys on the side, pretty well mimicking the feel of the real keys, a nice touch.

    The bad:

    There aren't to many faults with the case, but I do want to point out three gripes. First there is a small section of rubber cut-out at the top right corner of the case of the phone. I'm not sure why this is here as it doesn't provide any access to any ports. The only thought is that it was to make it easier to install, but there is more than enough give in the rubber to avoid providing this weak spot in the cases protection. You can see it in this picture:

    Related to that is the fact the case seems too loose. It's tight enough to have no worries about it falling off, but I would prefer it to be a little tighter so that it would be less likely to collect dust/dirt on the sides. You can see in this picture where the sides bend out easily (I used very little pressure to move them):

    Final issue is that the cutout hole for the top mic was off by a millimeter. It covers about 1/3 of the mic hole up. This doesn't seem to be a problem, I've had no complaints about voice volume from people I've called (and I asked) in speaker or regular phone mode. I just would expect a little better given how precise the rest of the cases cut-outs seems to be.


    I like it, I'm going to keep it on, and may look at different colors as white isn't my favorite. I didn't get to choose the color, randomly selected by Rearth, and though white doesn't look bad, I'm more a dark color person. Luckily they are a great bargain given their sub $20 price. Only downside is I'm not sure what I'll do with my Zagg full body, besides using the screen protector part (I haven't put the Zagg on yet).
    Ogre840 likes this.
    08-16-2011 02:35 PM
  2. D-Caf's Avatar
    Actually, I just now watched Gianpy's video review (I skipped it until I had done my own) and it's pretty good, though I'm surprised the cutout on the corner is for the antenna signal, didn't think silicon was a significant RF blocker.
    08-16-2011 02:45 PM
  3. D-Caf's Avatar
    Small update for those who are interested.

    After almost a month of use, I've stopped using the case.

    The problem is dirt/lint. I keep my phone in my pocket and unfortunately this case traps a lot of dirt/lint under the edge around the screen and around all the audio/usb ports. I took the case off and had to give the phone a serious wiping down to clean off all the collected lint, some of which had started getting into the ports.

    It's a great design and I love the feel of it, but it needs to be tighter on the phone to resist letting dirt/lint under the edges.

    Back to no case for me.
    09-05-2011 07:13 PM